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Online Advertising Platform Settles Allegations It Collected Personal Information from Children

  • The FTC reached a settlement with online advertising platform OpenX Technologies, Inc. to resolve allegations that OpenX collected personal information from children under 13 without parental consent in violation of the FTC Act and the FTC’s Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.
  • The complaint alleged, among other things, that OpenX, which operates a real-time bidding platform for selling advertising space on websites and apps, collected location data and personal information on users of apps intended for minors without parental consent, and passed this information to third parties who used the information to target their advertising. In addition, the complaint alleges that OpenX continued to collect geolocation information despite users’ opt outs.
  • Under the terms of the stipulated order, OpenX is subject to a $7.5 million civil penalty, of which $5 million is suspended. In addition, OpenX is required to delete ad request data collected to target ads and implement a comprehensive COPPA-compliance privacy program, which includes re-reviewing apps on a periodic basis to identify minor-directed apps that should be banned from its ad exchange.